Season one of the anime Trese has been officially uploaded on Netflix last Friday, just in time for the 123rd anniversary of the Philippine Independence! Now, it is time for us to review this anime adaptation.
Spoiler warning for those who haven’t seen the first season of Trese. Major plot points will be discussed here and if you haven’t seen it yet, best to binge it first and return for the review.
Let us then start!
Trese primarily centers on a young Alexandra Trese who investigates supernatural crimes while keeping in check those who reside in the supernatural side. There are six episodes on its first season and it instantly dives into the lore of Philippine mythology and folklore.
The story is well written and is engaging from the very first episode. It shows immediately what threats we should expect to happen in the near future on the next episodes. Even though it has only six episodes on its arsenal, we get a concise history of who Trese is, her backstory, and the world she lives in. There is no need for more expositions to tell the story as it lets its circumstance tell on what is happening.
When it comes to the visuals, it really captures the essence of the Philippines. From the streets, the nightlife, to its outskirts, the anime truly showcased the beauty of the Philippines. Even the culture of the Filipinos to the food made it more authentic which also includes the customs and practices of the Filipinos.
The creatures and monsters that were introduced in the anime show that they poured out their soul and heart in designing as well as doing the research to make it authentic as well as scary and frightening. I really love how Talgabusao was brought to life. It gives me the feeling that he is like Kratos mixed with Lobo.
With an anime as fresh and good as Trese, there are still things that feel off and don’t fit in the story itself.
First off is the voice actor, especially with the voice actor in the Tagalog version. In the Filipino dub of Trese, Alexandra Trese is being dubbed by Filipino actress Liza Soberano. Her performance, to be honest, is unsettling. It feels off and emotionless. Although we get the idea that she was designed to be like Bruce Wayne/Batman, Trese needs to be emotionless and her experiences in life also affect her to express how she feels. But the problem is that the voice acting feels unreal. It was not emotionless, it was monotonous. Her tone from the first to the last episode was the same whereas Batman who is emotionless can show different tones of voices in just one episode of Batman: The Animated Series.
Liza Soberano should have exerted a little bit of effort, made exaggerations, created dynamism in her voice to bring the character truly to life. The reason I continued the anime was that the story was engaging. However, when she speaks, you don’t get the hint of any change in the tone. It was truly dull.
Also, her accent sets it off. It was inconsistent wherein they cast someone else to voice the young Alexandra Trese but when she grew up, she somehow managed to get an Americanized accent. For a keen audience, they would feel off right away. They would question as I did on where she got the accent.
If they want to continue with Liza as Trese in the future seasons, they should at least place her in a workshop, wherein she can practice, experience, and at the same time improve on her voice acting skills. She is a wonderful actress but she just needs to improve on this part of the job if she wants to still continue as the badass supernatural detective.
This Filipino anime series introduced everyone to a new world of mythical creatures that will surely haunt you. Its well-written story will surely get you hooked right away as the mystery gets unraveled in front of you. The fast-paced story will surely get your attention especially with its stellar visuals and fight scenes.
The only thing that let this series a little bit of a downer was the lead’s emotionless and monotonous voice acting. Practice and voice acting workshop will surely help the lead’s performance in the future, for a more dynamic and interesting voice acting.
Trese is interesting and here’s hoping for a second season. We give this Filipino anime series a score of…